In July 2008, the Joseph Rowntree Foundation published ‘Immigration and Social Cohesion in the UK: The rhythms and realities of everyday life’ by Mary Hickman, Helen Crowley and Nick Mai.
The research shows that most people felt that social cohesion was about negotiating the right balance in expressing difference and unity in local areas, rather than expecting complete consensus on values and priorities. However, some majority ethnic long-term residents experienced government concerns with immigration as prioritising the interests of private business, while neglecting their specific needs. The researchers conclude that the limited opportunities and multiple deprivations of the long-term settled population in parts of UK towns and cities undermine social cohesion. To ensure cohesion, the impact of social and economic changes needs to be addressed as well as how people relate to each other.
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On 17 July 2008, the European Court of Justice (ECJ) ruled that treating employees less favourably because of their association with a disabled person was unlawful.
The case of Sharon Coleman, funded by the Equality and Human Rights Commission jointly acting with solicitors Bates Wells & Braithwaite London LLP, was referred to the ECJ by an Employment Tribunal in order to determine if ‘disability discrimination by association’ is unlawful. Her case will now have to go back to the Tribunal for a hearing later this year.
In a statement, the Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC) said that ‘[t]he legal victory in Europe creates new rights for Britain’s six million carers, including those looking after older relatives’.
In July 2008, the Equality Commission for Northern Ireland published the findings of a survey of awareness of the Age Regulations and attitudes of the general public in Northern Ireland towards age-related issues.
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On 9 July 2008, the All Party Parliamentary Group on Equalities held a seminar with Jonathan Rees, Director General of the Government Equalities Office.
The event was also the APPG’s Annual General Meeting and the following officers were elected:
Chair: Anne Begg MP
Vice-chairs: Nia Griffith MP, Eleanor Laing MP, Lord Lester of Herne Hill, Baroness Young of Hornsey
Secretary: Evan Harris MP
Treasurer: Baroness Greengross
Click here for minutes of meeting
The Criminal Justice and Immigration Act received royal assent on 8 May 2008. The Act introduces a new criminal of offence of incitement to hatred on the grounds of sexual orientation.
Click here for link to the Act